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Langenbecks Arch Surg. 2008 Nov;393(6):919-22. doi: 10.1007/s00423-007-0277-z. Epub 2008 Jan 12.

Pain and pain generation in pancreatic cancer.

Author information

1
Department of Abdominal Surgery, IRCCS-Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza, San Giovanni Rotondo, Foggia, Italy.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Pain can be a frequent symptom during the natural history of a patient with pancreatic cancer. An increase in incidence with disease progression and the presence of unbearable pain may preclude a curative resection.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Even in those patients with resectable pancreatic cancer, the presence of pain has an impact on prognosis. To date, we do not really know why some patients develop pain.

RESULTS:

Perineural cancer cell invasion is one of the most intriguing characteristics of this neoplasia and may in some cases explain the pain sensation. In addition, so-called "neurogenic inflammation" might also play a role in pain generation in pancreatic cancer, just like in chronic pancreatitis.

CONCLUSION:

In conclusion, understanding the mechanisms of pain in pancreatic cancer could help patients because what counts is not only 5-year survival but also median survival with good quality of life.

PMID:
18193269
DOI:
10.1007/s00423-007-0277-z
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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